Reinforced by the ribcage, the thoracic spine is generally much more stable than the cervical or lumbar regions. It is rare to see cases involving thoracic spine injury but injuries in this region can occur and we see cases of this type from time to time. Intervertebral disc injuries in the thoracic spine can be quite severe resulting in significant spinal stenosis and compression of the spinal cord at these levels. The most severe disc injuries often require extensive surgical repairs. These repairs include both the removal of the offending disc material and fusions of the injured levels. There are multiple options for surgical fusion.
This case involved a traditional posterior decompression and fusion including posterior fixation hardware. First an incision was created to expose the posterior aspects of the spine at the levels of injury. Next, the laminae and spinous processes were removed to decompress the spinal cord. This decompression was widened at each level in what is called medial facetectomies to provide better access to the underlying disc injuries. These posterior openings allowed for the meticulous removal of the herniated disc material at each of the injured levels. Once all the disc material had been removed, multiple fusion cages were packed with bone graft and inserted into the disc spaces. Finally, the fusion was completed with the placement of multiple pedicle screws, connecting rods and cross links to fully stabilize the segment of the spine involved in the injury. Regardless of the level of the injury or the number of vertebral spaces involved, Trial Exhibits can assist you in finding the best solution for the presentation of your evidence. A dramatic and informative presentation can make all the difference for your client.
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